He has played characters that fought aliens, tamed dinosaurs and even one that transformed into a fly; but Jeff Goldblum’s ultimate favourite role in life is being a father to his baby boy.
His son Charlie Ocean was born on the Fourth of July last year, the day when Americans celebrate Independence Day, which co-incidentally is the title of Goldblum’s hit 1996 movie. He was in the midst of filming its sequel, Independence Day: Resurgence, when his sweet bundle of joy arrived.
“We were shooting in Albuquerque during the summer and the baby was due on July 4. However, the doctors said that the delivery could happen two weeks before or after that date. The company was really nice and gave me a window in the schedule around that time. I got home and my wife still hadn’t had the baby, and sure enough, on the morning of Independence Day, the baby was born,” said Goldblum during the Resurgence promotional tour in Sydney.
“It’s fantastic having a baby,” said Goldblum who shared that he is a very hands-on type of father.
“I give him his bottle in the morning, change his diapers, and the three of us get in the bathtub every night for bath time. So it’s really sweet,” he said. Goldblum constantly posts photographs of his son on his Instagram account, and there is even a picture of them in the bathtub together.
It is the first baby for Goldblum and his wife former Olympics gymnast Emilie Livingston, who have been together for over five years. The excitement of being a new father has not worn off on Goldblum, who surprisingly doesn’t show any fatigue synonymous with parenthood. He was in fact a big ball of energy throughout the interview, talking animatedly, and looking on point with his fashionable cap and flashy shoes.
Goldblum looks good at 63, and seemed bashful when a journalist commented that he doesn’t show any signs of ageing. “I am getting old like everyone else. I try to do the right things – eat well, get sleep and exercise.
But even before the baby got into the picture to keep him occupied and on his toes, Goldblum was already a busy man.
A quick recap of his IMDB page shows that Goldblum has been involved in a project every year since the first Independence Day movie was released 20 years ago. While he appeared in movies – with Johnny Depp and Gwyneth Paltrow in Mortdecai in 2015, and as the kooky Deputy Kovacs in The Grand Budapest Hotel – Goldblum was also active on the small screen.
He had various guest-starring gigs (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, The League, Glee) and was even a regular on Law & Order: Criminal Intent.
But when the opportunity came to reprise his beloved role as David Levinson in Resurgence, Goldblum revealed that it didn’t take much convincing. Besides, one of his favourite actresses, Charlotte Gainsbourg was in the movie as well.
“I have scenes with her and she’s wonderful. I’ve always been a fan of Lars Von Trier, and this gave me the excuse to rewatch Nymphomaniac, Melancholia and Antichrist. She was wonderful to work with,” said Goldblum, revealing he’d jump at the opportunity to work with Von Trier.
If he does, and it somehow involves Goldblum playing a scientist, then the deduction that he plays a man of science – The Fly’s gene-splicing Seth Brundle, Jurassic Park’s chaos theorist Ian Malcolm, The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou’s oceanographer Alistair Hennessey – more than anything else in his career is a valid one.
“My dad was a doctor, but it’s only since I’ve been playing these roles that I’ve had more of an interest in science. I recently saw Jim Watson, who along with Francis Crick discovered DNA, on a cruise I did with my family through Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore. He’s 88 now, I played him in a movie (In The Race For The Double Helix) when I was in my 20s.”
Goldblum however will also be the first person to admit that he hardly knows anything about science. But, that might change in a few years now.
“I watch Neil deGrasse Tyson’s Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey with my son and learn about science with him,” he said. And yes, there is an Instagram snapshot of the daddy and son duo in bed watching the show.
“I play scientists in movies, but I cannot do anything,” he said. “I am however very interested in science. I admire scientists and science and I think that they are important to this world.”